I asked for a bottle of absinthe for Christmas, because I’ve only been able to find it locally sold in kits, with glasses and spoons, which I already have. I didn’t get it. (I also didn’t get the bottle of rye I asked for. I think my mother secretly converted to Puritanism.)

But a couple of days later I read about a company called Absinthes.com on Uncrate, which sells sample sizes of an array of European absinthes. Cool, I thought, because around here you can only get American absinthe, which sprang up when the ban on thujone was lifted in 2006, and it would be interesting to compare absinthe from different countries. So I picked one each from Switzerland, France, and Spain, and what the hell, threw in a glass, too. With shipping it came to just under $60. A lot of that was the glass and the shipping, the samples were $8 or $9 each.

A week goes by, I don’t get notification that my order has shipped, I send them a polite email inquiring about the delay. They answer that the Spanish absinthe has been backordered, they’re expecting it by the end of the week, I can either wait or pick another absinthe.

Okay, Customer Service 101, people: when someone buys something that’s backordered, you let them know, as opposed to just ignoring them and letting them wonder why a company took their money and then didn’t give them what they paid for.

I elected to wait, another 3 weeks go by, I send them another email asking when the backordered item is going to be in stock, as it’s now been a month since I ordered. I receive an email saying they “just now” noticed a “problem” with my shipping address, and they are no longer shipping via USPS to basically anywhere in the south except for the Carolina dues to “reasons”. But the good news is I can have my order in 1-5 days if I just pay literally more than double ($61 and change) for UPS.

WOW. Allow me to parse the levels of crappy service here:

  1. If you refuse to ship to a large swathe of the country for vague, unspecified “reasons”, you need to let people know that when they’re picking their shipping options.
  2. You don’t take a solid month to realize oh hey, we can’t ship to this address (because “reasons”).
  3. You should contact your customer, instead of just ignoring them and making them contact you.

Needless to say, I am through with these clowns. I told them the many ways their service sucked and asked them to cancel my order and refund my money immediately.

I’m really disappointed in this company. It was such an interesting idea, but they’ll need a lot of improvement before I’ll give them any of my money again.


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